June: Looking back, looking ahead.

Singing "Over the Rainbow" at the US Open, led by conductor David Michael Wolff

Singing “Over the Rainbow” at the US Open, led by conductor David Michael Wolff

You guys.  It’s July tomorrow, for crying out loud!  The summer is going by so quickly.  It’s not always easy, but I’m trying to remember to take time out for, well, doing nothing.  There’s a whole lot of busy-ness and business to take care of in our day-to-day lives, but I’ve found that taking an hour to read a book in the park or just stroll down a tree-lined street can make a huge difference in one’s mood and, yes, productivity.

My ode to leisure notwithstanding, June was fast-paced and filled with some pretty ridiculously fun gigs: DUCHESS brought girl-on-girl harmony to Birdland, I guested with the Carolina Philharmonic in a celebration of music from the movies and Broadway, and I teamed up with Joe Alterman, Jim Cammack, and Kevin Kanner for some jubilant, hard-swinging jazz in Greenwich Village and on Long Island.


DUCHESS backstage at Birdland

Looking ahead, July is filled with travel!  This Thursday, I’m boarding a plane with George Gee and friends for a couple of back-to-back big band gigs in Las Vegas and Los Angeles.  Later in July, I’m heading out to the Pacific Northwest for a few shows in Seattle, Tacoma, and Portland.  And in the last few days of July, the DUCHESS gals and I are hitting the road: Route 66, to be exact.  We’ll be sharing the stage with Bruce Forman’s CowBop and a host of other entertainers as we perform in historic theaters along the “highway that’s the best,” as the song goes.

In June, I…

Blogged about: The Return of Ad Alta Voce.  Singer-Friend Amy Cervini.  The Greek Festival.  Words & Music.

Watched: Veep.  Julia Louis-Dreyfus, cursing like a sailor.  Tony Hale.  Gary Cole.  Need I say more?

Read: What Is Visible, by Kimberly Elkins.  A fictional portrayal of real-life Laura Bridgman, the first deaf and blind person to learn language.  Sad, fascinating, beautifully written.

Listened to: Maria Rita and Marisa Monte.  Both women gorgeously meld traditional bossa nova with contemporary songwriting and production for the perfect summer soundtrack.

Somewhere in the midst of all this music and travel, I’m hoping to make it to the beach for an afternoon of unfettered relaxation.  Seize the summer, everybody—let’s all heed these wise words from Ferris Bueller:



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